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Endogenous Borrowing Constraints and Consumption Volatility in a Small Open Economy

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  • Carlos de Resende

Abstract

Consumption volatility relative to output volatility is consistently higher in emerging economies than in developed economies. One natural explanation is that emerging economies are more likely to face borrowing constraints and, as a consequence, find it more difficult to use international capital markets to smooth consumption. The author investigates how much this mechanism alone can account for the relative consumption volatility differential between emerging and developed economies. His theoretical approach relies on a standard dynamic general-equilibrium model of a small open endowment economy that is subject to an endogenous borrowing constraint. The borrowing constraint makes the small economy exactly indifferent between two options: (i) repaying its external debt, or (ii) defaulting and having to live in financial autarky in the future. The model for the constrained economy is calibrated to match Brazilian data during the period 1980-2001. The author's findings suggest that the model is capable of accounting for more than half of the observed relative consumption volatility differential.

Suggested Citation

  • Carlos de Resende, 2006. "Endogenous Borrowing Constraints and Consumption Volatility in a Small Open Economy," Staff Working Papers 06-37, Bank of Canada.
  • Handle: RePEc:bca:bocawp:06-37
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Grossman, Herschel I. & Han, Taejoon, 1999. "Sovereign debt and consumption smoothing," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 44(1), pages 149-158, August.
    2. Calvo, Guillermo A. & Vegh, Carlos A., 1999. "Inflation stabilization and bop crises in developing countries," Handbook of Macroeconomics,in: J. B. Taylor & M. Woodford (ed.), Handbook of Macroeconomics, edition 1, volume 1, chapter 24, pages 1531-1614 Elsevier.
    3. Aguiar, Mark & Gopinath, Gita, 2006. "Defaultable debt, interest rates and the current account," Journal of International Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(1), pages 64-83, June.
    4. Bulow, Jeremy & Rogoff, Kenneth, 1989. "Sovereign Debt: Is to Forgive to Forget?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 79(1), pages 43-50, March.
    5. Cole, Harold L & Dow, James & English, William B, 1995. "Default, Settlement, and Signalling: Lending Resumption in a Reputational Model of Sovereign Debt," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 36(2), pages 365-385, May.
    6. Cole, Harold L. & Kehoe, Patrick J., 1995. "The role of institutions in reputation models of sovereign debt," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 45-64, February.
    7. Aiyagari, S. Rao & Gertler, Mark, 1991. "Asset returns with transactions costs and uninsured individual risk," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 311-331, June.
    8. Reinhart, Carmen & Calvo, Guillermo, 2000. "When Capital Inflows Come to a Sudden Stop: Consequences and Policy Options," MPRA Paper 6982, University Library of Munich, Germany.
    9. Aiyagari, S. Rao & Gertler, Mark, 1991. "Asset returns with transactions costs and uninsured individual risk," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 311-331, June.
    10. Greenwood, Jeremy & Hercowitz, Zvi & Huffman, Gregory W, 1988. "Investment, Capacity Utilization, and the Real Business Cycle," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(3), pages 402-417, June.
    11. Cristina Arellano, 2005. "Default Risk, the Real Exchange Rate and Income Fluctuations in Emerging Economies," 2005 Meeting Papers 516, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    12. Reinhart, Carmen & Calvo, Guillermo & Leiderman, Leonardo, 1992. "Capital Inflows and Real Exchange Rate Appreciation in Latin America," MPRA Paper 13843, University Library of Munich, Germany.
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    Cited by:

    1. Manuel Toledo & Luis B. Marques & Fernando A. Alvarez, 2009. "Excess Volatility of Consumption in Developed and Emerging Markets: The Role of Durable Goods," 2009 Meeting Papers 142, Society for Economic Dynamics.
    2. International Monetary Fund, 2011. "Business Cycles in Emerging Markets; The Role of Durable Goods and Financial Frictions," IMF Working Papers 11/133, International Monetary Fund.
    3. Álvarez-Parra, Fernando & Brandao-Marques, Luis & Toledo, Manuel, 2013. "Durable goods, financial frictions, and business cycles in emerging economies," Journal of Monetary Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(6), pages 720-736.
    4. repec:eee:inecon:v:108:y:2017:i:c:p:67-81 is not listed on IDEAS
    5. Carlos de Resende, 2007. "IMF-Supported Adjustment Programs: Welfare Implications and the Catalytic Effect," Staff Working Papers 07-22, Bank of Canada.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    International topics;

    JEL classification:

    • F32 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - Current Account Adjustment; Short-term Capital Movements
    • F34 - International Economics - - International Finance - - - International Lending and Debt Problems
    • F41 - International Economics - - Macroeconomic Aspects of International Trade and Finance - - - Open Economy Macroeconomics

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